Before I begin my blog post, please note that for all those folks who scrape images illegaly for their own use – don’t do it with this one. I have full copyright for it, and I’ve payed handsomely too. If you scrape it or copy it in any way, I’ll not be pleased and I’ll have no hesitation in coming after you in terms of legality. Thank you for your concern.
Lots of folks are getting involved with Amazon Kindle publishing and for good reason too. If it works for you, it can change your life around entirely.
Well, let me spell out the reality… for most folks it does not change anything at all and many (although not all) of those internet marketers who keep shouting with the loudest voice that Kindle is where it is at, and they offer a course to tell you how it’s done, are simply trying to take money from your pocket.
Sorry if I’m treading on some toes here, and surely I am (I could name a number of marketers who simply churn out one expensive product after another regards to how to be succesful at Kindle publishing and much of it is utter garbage… I’ll resist naming any names… Well, okay, now that you twist my arm, how about John Jonas and Jay Boyer. Their stuff is generally okay but the problem I have is that they churn out such a gross amount of costly products that it soon becomes apparent that all they want is to make a ton of money from unsuspecting marketers.
Anyhow, here’s my reasoning.
If you, as a marketer, are so good at crafting books for Kindle, and you are making a ton of money from it (Steve Scott comes to mind – he’s seeing some very good success and his books deserve that success – Steve is one of the few top class internet marketers that I highly admire), then why would you want to bother selling your system to the IM world?
I mean, surely you’d be happy to focus on writing (creating) books for Kindle and that’s it. I don’t know – maybe I’m missing something.
Fact is that some folks enjoy teaching others how to do stuff (me included – I like teaching when I have something to teach) so there’s motive enough for “some” marketers to create a how-to Kindle publishing course.
But I still suspect that for most IM’s it’s more about greed than anything else. They concoct a crappy Kindle publishing product then sell it to desperate marketers. Where have you heard that before?
Anyhow, let me put my own Kindle publishing experiences into some perspective here.
It makes sense for me to publish my works on Kindle because I’m actually a half-decent writer (so I like to think) and I actually really enjoy writing for some markets. Another way to put that – it’s a passion for me.
Now, kinda getting off the point here. I listened to a podcast on Pat’s blog recently (Pat Flynn, that is) about why you should NOT focus on your passions if you want to be successful online. Here’s the link – the podcast is fascinating. Nevertheless, as an experienced marketer myself, I couldn’t help but see – or sense – a number of gaping holes in the method being discussed (as the commentor TomL has also pointed out – you can see his comment at the very top. TomL is a friend of mine, and he too is a very experienced marketer). That’s besides the point though. Let’s move on…
Thus far I’ve published seven books on Kindle, covering two different niches/ markets, and honestly, none of them have been particularly successful. Okay and for sure, you can argue that seven books is no-where near enough to (necessarily) see success. Ah well, I’m still working on that… Anyhow, folks like Amanda Hocking hasn’t published a whole raft of books, and yet she makes millions in income each year.
It’s a bit strange really because for one of the niches that I focused on, when I took the books off Kindle (“unpublished” from Kindle) and republished excerpts of those books to cater to a more specific clientele, my work became very popular indeed. On Kindle though, it flopped rather pathetically, regardless the fact that Kindle attracts so many potential buyers each and every day.
That kinda suggests that Kindle is not the be-all-and-end-all to publishing stuff online.
The other niche/ market I focused on was cooking.
As you may know, I set up a website called Fatso In the Kitchen (oddly enough, in recent times I’ve lost quite a bit of weight and am now down to 73 kg. For a 6 ft guy that’s not overweight at all, so the name Fatso In the Kitchen is something of a misnomer ) which details my experiences in the kitchen.
Once again, my (cook) books on Kindle have proven to be something of a failure. For sure, I’ve sold quite a few of the two books I put together, and when gifting those books as freebies on KDP they flew off the shelves. But sales have never really gotten off the ground to any great extent. Not too bad, but not good enough.
For one of my cookery books – slow cooker desserts (you can see it over to the right in the sidebar), I popped it on KDP freebie for 48 hours and it had almost 5,400 downloads within that time. Well, does that mean I’ll make a whole load of sales off the back of the success here? Not on your nelly! I get a couple of sales per day and that’s it. A couple of sales per day nets me about 4 bucks per day. Not exactly IM millionaire status, is it?
[Makes you wonder though... if you can figure out a popular niche on Kindle, and you can figure a way to get folks to click a link within your freebie book, and then take some sort of action... then why not do lot's of KDP freebies... This is more than FOOD for thought - pardon my pun... If you can build a list from freebie books on Kindle - I mean, you get my point...]
For the other cook book which I invested more time in, it’s had quite a few freebie downloads also on KDP although not to the same extent as the dessets book. But then it’s a much more niche niche, if you see what I mean – Crock Pot Vegetarian and Gluten-Free Recipes.
I came a cropper with this book though because a couple of the reviews (the only two reviews I’ve had at the time of writing this blog post) were fairly harsh. One saying that a single fish recipe I’d included in the book was not vegetarian, and the other said that some of my recipes were not exacty gluten-free.
Erm… lesson learned. Don’t try to blag (blag means that you’re pretending to be an expert when you are not) your way through book writing. You’ve got to know what you are talking about or chances are folks will pick up on your shortcomings and book reviews will be poor. I didn’t outsource the writing – I did it all myself. It was hard labour. Hard labour, yes. But it’s not really my passion, and the couple of book reviews I’ve received thus far tend to reflect that.
And yes, I regard myself as a vegetarian, although I now learn that perhaps I am no longer regarded as vegetarian because I eat fish – I’m clinically termed as a pescotarian or something… But I am certainly not confined to a gluten-free diet, which would be close to impossible here in the Philippines, I imagine.
Who should really care though – pescotarian, vegetarian, octogenarian… If I buy a book and I enjoy reading it, I’m hardly going to critice the author for a single and relatively small oversight. People can be so harsh…
Nevertheless, regardless my persistent failures, I still persevere with Amazon Kindle publishing – for better or for worse. For richer or for poorer.
Maybe I’m banging my head on the proverbial brick wall and yet I don’t yet perceive it as such. I think in the English language, that’s termed as being a “dumb-ass”.
I’ve written a further five books specifically for Kindle over the past couple of weeks (again, writing is my passion, so it makes good sense to pursue it, regardless of what Dane Maxwell says). Short books, yes (when I say short, I mean anything between a 1,200 word count and 3,200 word count for each book).
None of which have been published as of yet.
Whether they will be successful is anyone’s guess, although I surely do have my doubts about it, I have to admit.
But… I did have fun putting the storylines together, and I surely do hope that comes across to the potential readers. (Is the word putting spelled with one ‘t’ or two?).
Not only that – I’ve also invested in some really excellent illustrative work for these particular books, and I’m hoping that this will help to get folks to dig in their pockets to find some cents to make a purchase.
There’s definitely no guarantee for success though. If your books are not exactly what folks are looking for, no matter how hard you try, you will not find much success on Kindle. That’s my experience anyhow.
Let me know what you think, thank you!